I'd like your input about what your firm does... and perhaps about what you wish it would do. I might call this a "best practices" article, except that I'm not sure there's any "best" here, just what works for a given company. My aim, however, is to collect enough data to give other IT professionals a sense of the tradeoffs among the varying choices.
This all started because I overheard an IT person complain about her users. The company has 300 employees, many of whom would have been called "paper pushers" in an earlier era. Some of those employees decide to download software and install it on their computers. The specific example was screensavers (some of which carry a payload of spyware, making it a security issue as well as a support problem), but it could have been anything else. The IT pro whom I overheard had looked at a $10,000 hardware solution, but even that required 10 hours a week to keep up with permissions and such. But that didn't sound like a great option.
So I'm curious -- and I dare say, so are a lot of other people.
How does YOUR company deal with employees installing apps on the company computers? My guess is that the answer breaks down in these rough categories.
1. We let them do whatever they want. And then we cope with the consequences.
2. They can install what they want, but we'll only support the apps we install. If they break the computer or get a virus... THEY get to fix it.
3. We control their installations by administrative policy (i.e. "if you install unapproved software, you're fired").
4. We control their installations using technology. What technology would that be?
5. Something else?
Which of these best fits your company's choices? Which option do you wish the company chose?
If you use some sort of technology, please tell me about it. How well does it work? Was it expensive, in financial or other terms? How annoying is it?
Similarly, how well does administrative policy work? Do employees follow the rules, or do they imagine that gosh, installing a screensaver doesn't qualify as an *app*, does it?
I'm hoping to get the article written by the end of the week (which might be pushing it -- I have major dental surgery scheduled for Thursday). So I'd appreciate hearing from you sooner, rather than later.
Thanks in advance for your help!
//Mod edit: All contact points edited to preclude spam, etc.
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Edited by KoanYorel, 21 August 2006 - 12:14 PM.